mental health workplace wellness

For Business to Focus on Employee Mental Health, Leaders Must Lead

The importance of focusing on mental health in the workplace arguably has never been higher. We’ve covered this topic, noting that more than half of employers cite a rise in workplace stress and mental health.

We also pointed out a Bloomberg BNA that reports that “Mental health issues and strategies to handle them are trending in human resource concerns in Canada, according to a national study from the Conference Board of Canada released at the organization’s Better Workplace meeting in Vancouver Oct. 26.”

The post continues: “The study examined trends driving changes to wellness programs and the efforts by employers to integrate occupational health and safety, wellness and disability management programs into their workplaces. According to CBC director of workplace health, wellness and safety research Mary-Lou MacDonald, the study is the first of its kind in Canada, combining occupational heath and safety, absence and disability management and corporate wellness under one umbrella.”

Now, new insights from the UK and a report from Occupational Health & Wellbeing on how “leaders must change the culture on mental health at work.”

As the post notes: “Momentum is growing to make employers’ take responsibility to tackle the problem of mental health at work, not least from the Government.”

Indeed, a UK Government report from October 2016 indicates the seriousness of the issue. The report notes that “Ill-health among working age people costs the economy 100 billion British Pounds a year — and sickness absence costs employers 9 billion British Pounds a year.” The report adds: “Almost 1 in 3 working-age people in the UK have a long-term health condition which puts their participation in work at risk.”

Among the key goals cited by the UK Government include the goal to “put mental and physical health on an equal footing, to ensure people get the right care and prevent mental illness in the first place.”